The ground made famous during the Guangzhou Asian Games by the speed with which it was constructed at the Guangdong University of Technology has been given a new lease of life. An agreement has been signed with the University by the Asian Cricket Council, by which the ACC pays the University to allow the Chinese Cricket Association and Hong Kong Cricket Association exclusive use of the GDUT ground six months a year.

The agreement was signed this week in Guangzhou and allows for use of the state-of-the-art facility built in 15 months especially for the Asian Games in November 2010. From each October 1st to March 31st, on a renewable basis, at a cost of CNY150,000 (US$23,250) per season the GDUT ground will be available for use by the ACC, CCA and HKCA. The university will provide all maintenance for the outfield throughout the year, the ACC, funding the initiative, is responsible for the wicket area and will provide a specialist groundsman.

HKCA General Manager Danny Lai, ACC CHief Executive Syed Ashraful Huq, GDUT Vice President Professor Luo Shaoming and CCA External Affairs Director Zhang Tian at the signing of the agreement for use of the Guangzhou ground

“It’s what we’ve all been waiting for. We’re very grateful to the university authorities for allowing this to happen. Guangzhou's ground is a beacon in the region for cricket. For nearby Hong Kong this turf facility is a great boon. China’s national team cricketers mostly based in Shenyang up to now, have struggled to find places to train in winter. Guangzhou’s temperate climate opens up many more opportunities for them and will allow them a great deal more interaction with all the expatriate cricketers in the Pearl Delta,” says ACC Chief Executive Syed Ashraful Huq.

From China’s point of view, CCA External Affairs Director Zhang Tian says, “We will use the ground for national team training and matches with Hong Kong and even embassy teams who are very keen to play China. With Hong Kong we will share the costs of maintenance during tournaments.”

Hong Kong will also use Guangzhou for national team training says HKCA General Manager Danny Lai, the journey from the SAR to the mainland taking three hours by road. “It’s doable in a day and for those teams willing to travel in the domestic league we’d be happy to work out dates for them to play their fixtures in Guangzhou.”

After the conclusion of China’s National Cricket Championship at the end of August, the HKCA and CCA will be working out a schedule of use for the ground in consultation with the ACC.

Asian Games 2010
Uddin Comes to Get Things Done

Filed July 22nd, 2011